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'He's watching over me' | Austin Gamblers' Ezekiel Mitchell rides in cousin's honor

Just six days earlier, his younger cousin, Ouncie, who is also a pro bull rider, was shot and killed following an argument.

OKLAHOMA CITY — Austin Gamblers rider Ezekiel Mitchell delivered an unforgettable ride over the weekend. The ride was good because it lasted the full 8 seconds, but what made it great is whom Michell was riding for.

Just six days earlier, his younger cousin, Ouncie, who was also a pro bull rider, was shot and killed in Salt Lake City, Utah, following an argument with a woman he was in a relationship with. That woman has been arrested.

Mitchell is now riding in his cousin’s honor, and the emotion on Sunday was impossible to ignore.

“This is what me and Ouncie loved to do, to ride bulls. So to finally get it done this weekend was very fulfilling, and I'm glad he's watching over me and just blessed to be here," Mitchell said.

At the event inside the Paycom Center in Oklahoma City, a picture of Ouncie was shown on the big screen as Mitchell and spectators shared a moment of silence.

When asked if he considered skipping the games over the weekend, Mitchell said, "Ouncie wouldn't want me sitting over here pouting."

According to Wrangler Network, Ouncie had won the bull riding competition at the Tri-State Rodeo in Fort Madison, Iowa, just days before his death, earning 87.5 points riding Too Tropical. He was ranked No. 23 in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association’s (PRCA) bull riding rankings and second in the PRCA Rookie of the Year bull riding standings.

Following the end of Freedom Fest in Oklahoma City, the Gamblers now head to Ridgedale, Missouri, to take on the Kansas City Outlaws.

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